MIAMI — Democratic presidential nominee Hillary Clinton challenged Republican leaders in Congress on Tuesday to take emergency action to combat the spread of the Zika virus in the United States and accused Republican opponent Donald Trump of dismissing a growing public health crisis.

“I am very disappointed that the Congress went on recess before actually agreeing on what they would do to put the resources into this fight,” Clinton said after a tour of a Miami health clinic, the Borinquen Medical Center, that she described as “on the front lines” of the effort to contain the spread of the mosquito-borne virus.

“I would very much urge the leadership of Congress to call people back for a special session and get a bill passed,” she said.

The clinic stop was Clinton’s final campaign appearance in two days in vote-rich Florida that included fundraising parties in Miami. Immediately afterward, Clinton made an unannounced stop at a campaign office for Rep. Debbie Wasserman Schultz (Florida), the ousted Democratic National Committee chair, who faces a Democratic challenger in a primary on Aug. 30. Clinton’s own primary rival, Sen. Bernie Sanders, has endorsed Wasserman Schultz’s challenger, Tim Canova, and is raising money for him.

“I want to have her in the Congress by my side working day after day,” Clinton told staff and volunteers.

Wasserman Schultz was a Clinton ally, but the Clinton campaign was instrumental in forcing her to step aside last month following the publication of hacked emails showing DNC staff appearing to work against Sanders.

Wasserman Schultz showed no hard feelings Tuesday and pledged to “help carry the state of Florida and will carry you on the shoulders of Florida voters all the way to the White House.”

“We have to make sure that Donald Trump never gets anywhere near the White House,” she told Clinton. “This man is dangerous. He doesn’t have the temperament. He’s engaged in misogynistic, horrific, bigoted criticism and language that is absolutely unacceptable for anyone but particularly for someone who is the nominee of one of our major political parties.”

Separately, the Clinton campaign said it was unaware that Seddique Mateen, the father of the suspect in the June mass shooting at an Orlando, Florida, nightclub, secured a prime seat at a Clinton rally on Monday in Kissimmee, near Orlando.

Augusta and Waterville news

Get news and events from your towns in your inbox every Friday.


  • This field is for validation purposes and should be left unchanged.